Izumi in 2009
|Date of birth||31 July 1982|
|Place of birth||Shimonoseki, Yamaguchi, Japan|
|Height||1.76 m (5 ft 9 in)|
|2005||Albirex Niigata Singapore||22||(3)|
|2016||→ Mumbai (loan)||13||(1)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 22:33, 2 June 2016 (UTC).
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 10 January 2019
Albirex Niigata Singapore
In 2005 Izumi started his professional football career with Albirex Niigata Singapore of the S.League. Albirex Niigata Singapore was an affiliate of Albirex Niigata of the J.League. Arata grew a reputation for his speed while in the S.League. He scored his first professional goal of his career against Tampines Rovers in the S.League on 18 September 2005. He then scored his second goal of the season on 30 September 2005 against Woodlands Wellington. Arata ended the season with 22 caps in S.League with 3 goals and 2 caps in the Singapore Cup scoring 1 goal.
In 2006 after a successful season with Albirex Niigata Singapore in which the team finished 5th in the S.League, Arata moved back to Japan and signed for Mitsubishi Motors Mizushima of the Japan Football League. While with the team Arata also worked for Mitsubishi Motors as a toso (a person of paints cars). He worked 10 hours a day from 5 in the morning to 6 in the evening with the car company and then he spent 2 hours practicing with the football team. Despite scoring 7 goals and gaining 7 assists in 24 games during the 2006 season Izumi could not stop the club finishing in 17th place, 2nd the last that season.
In November 2006 Izumi signed for East Bengal of the National Football League. At first he struggled to get accustomed to the Indian climate but eventually he found his way. He ended his maiden season with the club with 1 goal and 10 assists in 14 games.
In 2007 Izumi signed for Mahindra United of the I-League, which replaced the old National Football League. He began the 2007–08 I-League campaign with an injury that kept him out of football for six months. He managed to come back that season, scoring 1 goal and getting 2 assists in 8 games. The next season Izumi scored 1 goal and gained 5 assists in 16 I-League games. That season Arata and Mahindra won the Durand Cup.
In 2009 Izumi signed for newly promoted I-League side Pune. Izumi has called his move to Pune as the turning point of his career. In 2010, he finished the season with a career high 10 goals and 10 assists in 26 games. He also scored an extra 6 goals in cup matches. He was the top goalscorer among all midfielders and was also nominated as the best midfielder in the I-League by goal.com. Izumi also won the Pune FC Man of Steel award from the club that season. Arata continued his good form for the club in 2010–11 scoring 6 goals and getting 9 assists in 24 games. On 22 October 2011 Izumi made his 50th appearance for the club in I-League in the opening match of the 2011–12 season against Shillong Lajong. On 24 August 2012 Izumi extended his contract by 2 years with Pune FC.
Atlético de Kolkata
In 2015 Izumi signed for Atlético Kolkata of the 2015 Indian Super League season.He started his campaign for the side with a goal against FC Goa in a high voltage 1-1 clash on 7 October. Six days latter on 13th October Izumi scored against Kerala Blasters in 2-1 win which was witnessed by a home crowd of sixty thousand Kolkata fans and legendary Pele at Salt Lake Stadium . He returned after an injury almost a month latter and produced a match winning performance against Kerala Blasters in Kochi, coming off the bench and scoring twice on 84th and 90+3 minutes with his team winning the match 3-2. His last goal came in a 2-3 defeat on 14 December against Mumbai City FC at Salt Lake Stadium on the final match of the group stage.
Style of Play
As player he can play anywhere on midfield and also as a False 9. Mostly Izumi likes to operate behind the striker or as a playmaker but also can play in as winger for his crossing abilities.Although he has been criticized sometimes for lack of consistency throughout his career.
On 24 August 2012, Izumi gained Indian citizenship, thus making him eligible to play for India at the international level. Then on 29 January 2013 it was confirmed that Izumi had been called up to Wim Koevermans side for the friendly against Palestine. Izumi then made his international debut in that match when he came on in the 64th minute for Lenny Rodrigues as India went on to lose the match 4–2.
Arata was born to Narendra Khambholja, a Gujarati father and Akiko Izumi, a Japanese mother. On 24 August 2012 it was officially announced by his club, Pune FC, that he has received Indian citizenship from the Government of India. Izumi also holds an Indian name, Neelkanth Khambholja.
|Club||Season||League||League Cup||Domestic Cup||AFC||Total|
|Albirex Niigata Singapore||2005||S.League||22||3||2||1||0||0||—||—||24||4|
|Mitsubishi Mizushima||2006||Japan Football League||24||4||8||2||0||0||—||—||32||6|
|East Bengal||2006–07||National Football League||14||1||1||0||0||0||—||—||15||1|
|Atlético de Kolkata||2015||Indian Super League||11||5||—||—||—||—||—||—||11||5|
- "Albirex Niigata 2005". Arata Izumi. Retrieved 25 August 2012.
- http://www.albirex.com.sg/ Niigata webpage
- "Singapore 2005". RSSSF. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 25 August 2012.
- http://arataizumi.com/news/stats.html Arata Izumi Stats
- "Mitubishi Mizushima FC 2006". Arata Izumi. Retrieved 25 August 2012.
- "Kingfisher East Bengal FC 2006–2007". Arata Izumi. Retrieved 25 August 2012.
- "Mahindra United FC 2007–2009". Arata Izumi. Retrieved 25 August 2012.
- "Pune FC 2009–2010". Arata Izumi. Retrieved 25 August 2012.
- "Pune FC 2010–2011". Arata Izumi. Retrieved 25 August 2012.
- "I-League: Pune FC 0–0 Shillong Lajong FC". Pune Football Club. Retrieved 25 August 2012.
- "Medio Arata now an Indian citizen; Pune FC extend contract". Pune Football Club. Retrieved 25 August 2012.
- Thomas, Nevin (9 January 2017). "Arata Izumi: 'Neroca project great for Indian football'". SportsStarLive. Retrieved 10 January 2017.
- "Arata Izumi becomes first foreign national to be selected for Indian football team". NDTV Sport. Retrieved 24 December 2013.
- "India 2-4 Palestine". Goal.com. Retrieved 24 December 2013.
- "Wim Koevermans names India squad for SAFF Championship". NDTV Sports. Retrieved 24 December 2013.
- Biswas, Babua. "Pune FC holds a special place in my heart: Arata Izumi". Sportskeeda. Retrieved 25 August 2012.
- Arata Izumi at Soccerway
- "Arata Izumi Statistics". Arata Izumi. Retrieved 24 December 2013.